The third year of trials of Asgrow soybean genetic lines is underway to choose the varieties that will be part of the commercial release of Monsanto's Roundup Ready 2 Yield technology in 2009. More than 10,000 varieties were looked at in over 100,000 test plots in 2006, with 300 advancing to trials in 2007. Soybean breeders and field agronomists monitored and evaluated these plots on the basis of yield performance as well as agronomic characteristics, such as disease and stress tolerance, under a wide range of local conditions. Jeff Wheeler, Asgrow Business Lead, says that for 2008 that number has been narrowed to 14.
"These products represent different maturities with a history of successful performance across a wide range of conditions," Wheeler said. "This year’s testing program of local, large-scale strip trials and replicated small plot testing will validate our observations over the previous years and obtain additional local data."
Roundup Ready 2 Yield soybeans will be available in 2009 on up to 2 million U.S. acres, mostly in geographies that support maturity groups 2 and 3. This includes all of Iowa, Nebraska, Ohio and Pennsylvania; most of Illinois and Indiana; portions of northern Missouri, Kansas and Maryland; and portions of southern Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan and South Dakota. Asgrow will be the leading provider of Roundup Ready 2 Yield soybeans in 2009 in both volume and number of varieties available. This controlled commercial release will be followed in 2010 by a full-scale product launch, when Roundup Ready 2 Yield soybeans are expected to be offered in expanded maturity groups on 5 million to 6 million U.S. acres.